Walk(er) like an Egyptian

Trip Start Oct 10, 2010
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Trip End Jun 29, 2011


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Flag of Egypt  ,
Monday, November 1, 2010

EGYPT! Wow.

So I went from the comfort of staying with a friend, who is a local, in his own apartment, to the crazy scene of Cairo. I was worried about getting my bag because my journey to Egypt consisted of 3 separate flights, but had zero problems. The cab ride to my hostel was a nice wake up call to traveling alone in foreign countries. Cairo has traffic. Lots of it and its 24/7. My cabbie got it right when he said “Cairo has many rules, but none for driving.” Most cars drive with their lights off at night and only use them to flash people they nearly miss, fit 4 cars in two lanes and literally miss each other and bike riders by mere inches. The whole time pedestrians are playing real-life games of “Frogger” trying to cross the road. I saw 2 little fender benders in my short time there.

After getting a good nights sleep in Invitation Hotel, with my own bed and bathroom, I had a full day ahead. I had a driver with me the whole day, but I'm proud to say I was not in one of the many giant tourist groups that were clogging up the works.  My day started at Saqqara; Saqqara was the old site and is a vast, ancient burial ground in Egypt where I saw the step pyramid of Djoser and visited the Imhotep Museum. Next stop was Dahshur, where I took the long and somewhat difficult trek to the tomb on the inside of the pyramid. All you see after walking in the claustrophobic inducing pathway that smells like ammonia is the old site where the tomb was. Entrance was included in the site admission fee, so I had to get inside one of the pyramids and see it for myself. I broke the day up from pyramid site seeing by learning and watching how ancient paper, papyrus, was created. I also went into a shop that demonstrated all the Egyptian perfumes, which I guess they are known for. So to end the day, Waldo and I took a 7 mile camel ride through Giza, to see The Great Pyramid of Giza (also called the Pyramid of Khufu), Pyramid of Khafre, Pyramid of Menkaure, the 6 small “queen” pyramids, and The Great Sphinx. I had sand in my teeth the entire 2 hour ride because my jaw dropped to the ground the entire ride. My guide was really cool and took me all over the sites, mostly going where none of those huge tourist groups were allowed to go :). After riding that camel for so long, I was walking like an Egyptian, but I had to wait for my driver to get back. So now I'm in an area with no tourists in site and just a bunch of locals. Kind of sketchy if you’re not used to this kind of thing, but I trusted them and they took me up to their roof to show me the view. It reminded me of that movie Aladdin because the building was terribly beat up... walls missing, roof missing, no windows, junk everywhere, and little mattresses spread out on the ground where they slept, but the view was amazing. (Aladdin showed Jasmine with Apu... remember?) They were extremely kind, just like all the locals I was able to meet, and we chatted over the drinks they gave me.

That night, I hit up a dinner boat cruise on the Nile River with dancing and a buffet. The entertainment included some amazing men dancers that would spin and dance and were just pure entertainment. There was a midget dancer that was also very talented and also used as some comedy relief. After the men, a women belly dancer came out and did her thing. She could defiantly shake it , shake shake, shake it like a polaroid picture.

The next day I head out on my own on the subway to the Coptic Museum, Abu Sarga Church and old Cairo. The church is believed to be where the Holy Family took refuge during their flight into Egypt. Afterward, I got a ride to the Citadel of Salah Al-Din, where the The Mosque of Muhammad Ali Pasha or Alabasterd Mosque resides. The Mosque was spectacular. Waldo couldn't take his shoes off, so I had to go inside alone. After visiting the Citadel, I hit up the Egyptian Museum, where I strolled around and got my fill of ancient artifacts..

My dogs are barkin and I'm done. It was a busy 2 days, but so worth the stop. I'm off to Nepal to meet up with my friends Gombu, Sean, and Chris for some Himalayan trekking!

Ma'salama
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Comments

kenny on

holy freakin crap! looks so awesome, definitely putting this on the to do list! good luck in the Himalayas!

Weeze on

WOW!!! I Love It!!! Egypt seems like such a cool place to visit. And yes that plce definitely looked like the place Aladdin took Jasmine with Apu. HAHA So great! Be safein Nepal and have FUN!!!! :)

cowgirl-jessie
cowgirl-jessie on

OhhhhWeeee Matt, Looks like the adventure is off to a good start.

Jesse the yodaling cowgirl

Maren on

Soooooo amazing!! We can't wait to hear about your next adventure! Love from the big apple-

ikaelin
ikaelin on

What a fantastic trip! I cannot wait to read about and see pictures of the next part...what will Waldo be up to now?!

Jaffar on

Dude that sounds pretty cool. did you find any Jasmin's to take on a majoc carpet ride from the rooftops? and Genie's or lamps? This is a place i never thought to stop at, but your pics and story reveal a good time that only Matt can garuntee.
cheers

lynne and Allan on

just going through your bloggs babe, you take care and have a fab time so much love to you, you monkey, you bypassed Frome, would love to has seen you again,and send you off with some nice clean washing !! xxxx

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